My wardrobe is kicking off on a much more upbeat and playful note than it did last year. There’s playful fringe, flirty pleats, and color! And it’s a good indication of the direction I want my wardrobe to go this year. I typically talk myself out of the more unique pieces because they might not be as versatile as something more subdued, but you know what I’ve found over the years? The pieces I love most are the ones that aren’t basic. The Cult Gaia bag that everyone owns now was one of last year’s most special pieces. It’s not versatile, but I get so much joy out of using it. The same holds true for this sequin dress and a faux fur coat, which actually became one of my most often worn pieces. Having the opportunity to look back and analyze what struck a chord with me and what didn’t is the biggest reason I keep an annual wardrobe Pinterest board for all of my new additions. You can see this year’s board here. I’ve gone back and forth on whether to add sponsored items to this board. On one hand, I only feature items that I actually do like and want to wear for more than just one post. On the other hand, the pieces I spend money on are probably the ones that actually represent my closet the best. Thoughts?
I’ve upped my quarterly budget by $100 to $850 this year. I realistically stick closer to that range anyway and it hasn’t felt like too much with my overall spending. Last year, I was really lucky to have offset all of my clothing purchases (plus pad my savings account) with a freelance project. I definitely can’t count on that every year, though! In any case, I’ve found that a quarterly budget works best for me. It allows me to spend more at the beginning of a season when I’m more excited about the latest offerings and less toward the end when my interest is waning.
First Quarter Budget: $850
Spent in January: $395
Amount Remaining: $455
See all of the year’s wardrobe additions here.
- Holst + Lee “Tinseltown” fringe earrings ($62; worn here): I admired these for a few months before I finally placed an order with their recent 35% off discount code. They’re incredibly lightweight and the shoulder-sweeping length makes a huge statement.
- Diane von Furstenberg “Kourtni” chiffon dress ($164; it’s popped back in various sizes here and here; worn here): I purchased this when DVF had an extra 30% off the sale price. It’s one of those pieces that feels very “me” thanks to the relaxed silhouette. It’s easy to throw on with flats or heels to wear to work, or sandals for a warm-weather outing.
- BB Dakota “Jacqueline” lace shift dress in red ($88): This dress is sexy. The front is low, the back is low, and it’s short. However, it doesn’t feel inappropriate. It just feels beautiful. It’s the perfect dress for Valentine’s Day, although I’m wearing it to a work cocktail event I’m hosting next month. (Ordering a heart-shaped pizza is the extent of our V-day celebration!) It runs a bit on the larger size due to the swing-style body. And for ladies who hate strapless bras, you’re in luck! The cap sleeves allow you to wear a regular bra in the same color as the dress. I’m planning to wear it with my favorite red flats. You know I’m a fan of short dresses with flat shoes!
- ASOS double layer cold shoulder mini pleated dress ($61): You may have noticed this dress in my sidebar earlier this month under the “Latest Find” header. I ordered it the day I came across it and I can’t wait for the weather to get warmer so I can actually wear it. It reminded me of my beloved pink pleated dress I wear on repeat throughout the summer, but with a sassier ’70s twist. I went with a size 8, which is typically what I’ll order for swing styles that don’t take my hips into account. It’s a really fun piece to wear and I can see myself reaching for it often this spring and summer with a pair of simple sandals (I’ve got my eye on these) and the colorful tote bag in this post. And when we finally book a spring trip to New Orleans, it’ll be the first thing in my suitcase!
- Old Navy faux leather tote bag ($20; worn here): I had been looking for an inexpensive tote bag that I could use for work to stash things like my lunch, ballet flats, and makeup case inside. I didn’t want something that I’d worry about or that would be ruined by precipitation. This Old Navy tote fit the bill and it’s actually a lot nicer than I thought it would be. I love the zipper top to keep everything tucked inside. It’s also lightweight and seems to expand to accommodate whatever I need to throw inside. I’m actually going to use this as my personal item on our next flight. (I had used a Gap Rewards coupon to bring down the price to the $20 mark.)
As always, I want to be transparent about what I’ve received from companies for review or as part of a collaboration.
- Banana Republic signature modal tee (worn here)
- Banana Republic floral pleat-trim fit-and-flare dress
DIDN’T WORK OUT
Things I tried and didn’t love:
- Chelsea28 velvet and lace dress: The drop waist didn’t do my figure any favors. If you have slim hips, give it a try. It’s gorgeous in person!
I’ll be linking up with Fran!